Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Out of the Closet

Hello. My name is Chris. I have a soon-to-be 28 month old, and I still breast feed her.

Phew! That was hard work, but the news is out. For some of you, this isn't news at all. For others, it might be, and you might be asking, "Why is this lady posting this? Isn't that under the category of TMI?" Well, yes and no. I am posting just so people like me understand that there are people like them out there.

Did I think that I'd be nursing my 2 year old child? No, not in a million years. My plans were to go 12 months, then 15. The kid NEVER took a bottle, so just to keep peace in the house, I then said that 18 months was a good cutoff. That time came and went, and 2 years seemed like a good age to wean her...over the summer, to heck with sleep routines. However, I needed to sleep. And that, my friend, is the underlying issue here. I sleep better when said child sleeps better, and therefore, we still nurse. Lesson #1: SLEEP IS NOT OVERRATED. Parents -- you know this already, right? And don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

I met a lady at the pool this summer who had delivered her 3rd child 4 weeks prior. At some point, we started talking about nursing, and she asked how long I had nursed Melina. She must have seen the hesitation...she looked a little scared and inquired, "Oh, you are still nursing her then?" Luckily, she was brought up properly and didn't scowl or jump back in disgust. In fact, she didn't seem judgmental at all. She actually said she understood, and had hoped to nurse her first two longer than she did, but with both children, latching on was difficult. Because I was brought up properly, I did not launch into a tirade on how she could have sought help with the latch-on, since breast milk really is the best for the baby. Maybe there were other issues. Maybe she preferred to bottle-feed. In my mind, it was her choice. She and I clearly both agree to Lesson #2: DO NOT JUDGE UNTIL YOU HAVE WALKED IN MY SHOES.

Obviously, since I am posting this topic, I have some opinions on it. But to be truthful, I go back and forth each day on whether or not I am doing the right thing. Melina is a happy, healthy child, and isn't that the goal? She doesn't take a pacifier (unless she is pretending to be a baby), and many kids her age still use those. She won't suck her thumb, either -- another habit that many children take well into adolescence (including my other kids!).

In early September, I went to the gynecologist for my annual check-up and was discussing breastfeeding with the doctor. He is probably in his mid-fifites to early sixties, and while I absolutely love his view on pre-natal care and delivery, I was not sure of his outlook on extended breastfeeding. He sort of laughed at me when I sheepishly told him I was still nursing Melina. He laughed, not because I was still doing it, but because of how I said it. His response after that? "Well," he continued. "I can almost guarantee you won't be sending her to college still on the boob." As I said, I really like this man!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Croup!

So we finally know why were up at 4:45 am last Friday. Melina had a low grade fever all weekend, and I took her into the doctor on Monday, just to check things out (it was day 5 of fever, after all). The doctor thought perhaps she could have a sinus infection. She did say, "Does she cough at all? And if so, is it barky?" My answer was no.

That afternoon, things changed. Melina's temperature soared, she wouldn't eat. The fever blister on her lip got bigger, and she whispered when she tried to talk! Overnight, we had to strip her and keep a washcloth on her forehead. I had the fan going, just trying to keep her cool. By Tuesday, her fever had come down, but she started coughing. The barky cough. I monitored her that afternoon and all night (hard to sleep when you want to make sure your child is breathing), but I figured I'd call to see if there was something I needed to do. After hearing the severity of the situation, the nurse on the phone (on Wednesday morning) said, "Bring her in!"

Melina ended up with 3 shots (one was a steroid to help with the inflammation of the windpipe), a CBC and a chest x-ray. Luckily, the blood test and the chest x-ray were clear...just a tenacious virus keeping my baby miserable. She wasn't happy to stay with the sitter this morning, but it is lab exam week, and Tim had already stayed with her on Tuesday. She is slowing getting better, but I think we have a few more days to go.

The other kids never had croup, and boy, am I glad!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Confessions II

We've been up since 4:45 am. Despite what is supposed to be a beautiful day, odds are we spend lots of time today curled up in front of the television.

I often wonder why Melina can only count up to 3. Some kids this age count past that. I can't really remember if the other kids could count past that at 27 months, and to be honest, she has no NEED to count past that. Still, I wonder.

I am really glad we tackled potty training so early. I enjoy not having to change diapers (I don't mind them at bed time), and can't imagine going backwards.

The girls are going to be 9 in January! Where did the time go, and am I ready for this? I remember (ready for the TMI) that during my ninth year (I think toward the end), things started changing with my body. In a way, I want to let them know all of that before it happens. On the other hand, I find myself dragging my feet.

I usually drink a cup of coffee each day: 2/3 decaf, 1/3 regular. Do you think I just might sneak a little more caffeine into that cup? Again, 4:45 am, people!

It is October, and fall/winter weather will be right around the corner. I start to feel blue at this time of the year, missing the people I care about and don't see very often (you know who you are!).

Tim has a Facebook friend, who, I think, has a crush on him. At least it seems that way from some of the comments she makes. Internet flirting, perhaps? I don't think Tim has a clue, really.

Speaking of flirting, I've read 3 novels in the last couple of weeks that feature extramarital affairs as part of the story line. Reading them has made me reevaluate my marriage and scrutinize Tim (and myself) a little more than usual.

After doing the above introspective look, I realized that I'd marry him again tomorrow if he asked; I have no plans to stray.

Don't they all say that, though?!? (Kidding. Really.)